Have yourself a nice breakfast and get to it.  That storage room is calling!  How to start?  Just open the door and pick up the first thing closest to the door and put it in the appropriate pile.  Garbage, Recycle, Sell, Deal With.  Now if it’s something you want to keep, you may need to make a pile of these things until you have a bit of room. Work yourself into the room from the door around the room.

Take a few breaks during the day and I will see if I can update you on my purge.  Good luck, make sure you let me know how you’re doing.  Either comment to this post, or go into my ‘About Karen’ page and e-mail me.

22 Responses to DAY 1 – Get Sorting Your Storage Space

  1. Karen Biko says:

    My Think about pile is getting rather large!!

  2. Karen Biko says:

    Okay, so I’ve come across my canning jars, and this is what I’ve done. I’ve made sure each one has a ring that fits it or a lid. If not, they get recycled. To store them in a regular box try laying them on their sides, you will fit more in a box, and if spiders crawl in they can get out again (I just hate finding dried up crumpled spidies).

  3. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Michelle Kennedy and Bill Biko, Karen Biko. Karen Biko said: RT @tweetmeme DAY 1 of the 31 Day Declutter Challenge!– Get sorting that Storage Space http://bit.ly/d0odwE […]

  4. Kim H. A. says:

    The garage will be the storage space…been not able to do for 7 months, since we moved in….seems like a mountain to tall to climb…will see if we can start it.

  5. Karen says:

    Ok…..Hi Karen, my name is also Karen. I got a friend request in my email and I was just checking out your site. I will be starting the decluttering of my house come Monday morning!! I need to so bad. I have been meaning to do this and now this is my chance to get things done! Thanks for sharing!!

  6. admin says:

    Hey Karen,

    Always great to meet another Karen! Sorry for the slow reply, summer has been quite busy. Hopefully you find all the info helpful and can get through the clutter, thanks for the comment.


  7. Christine Uporsky says:

    Sadly my dumping room is my scrapbook room 🙁 BUT thanks to you it will be getting tackled all this week 🙂

  8. admin says:

    Hi Christine,

    You and me both, even though I’ve gone through the declutter process, things still seem to pile up over time. My studio starts to become the ‘dumping ground’ so easily, so I will be in there this week working away. Actually I started, I’ve just finished ripping apart all the craft magazines, and Martha Steward magazines and now I have three nice tidy binders with all my articles in them. I will do a post on it later…

    I will be thinking of you while I putter away this week.


  9. Peggy says:

    Hi Karen,

    Saw you on youtube, after searching for advice and motivation to declutter. Love your site and the first steps to take. My dumping room has been the basement and the garage. My issue is I work from 8-3p.m. six days a week, plus a part-time job 5-10p.m. three days a week and work Sundays 11-6p.m. (I’m Single at 55)
    When I cook, I’ll grill a weeks worth of food to last all week and take to work. When I’m well rested, by going to bed at a decent hour by 10p.m. it allows me to have some extra energy to attact some clutter after work. So Karen, do you have any advice how I should attact my clutter.
    Thank you,

  10. Karen Biko says:

    My gosh….Peggy, it sounds like you spend most of your time working!! Well, I know how tough it is to be working so much and not having a chance to get to all that clutter.

    I guess your best bet is to focus on one room. Depending where you are it might be a good idea to start with that garage area. I say this because while the weather is nicer it will be better working out there…when the colder times hit, then it will be better working inside.

    Because of your hectic schedule, you might just have to work a bit at a time. Maybe the 31 days won’t work, but you can still work through the same principal with a longer time period. Set your boxes up with disposal, donate, and think about, and make sure you can leave them in place for a while as you work through the garage. Then give yourself a time assignment … “I’m going to work in the garage today for an hour”, and then keep doing that on a daily or weekly basis. Make sure that when you fill a box, then you either get it to donation or garbage so you can start to see some results.

    I hope this helps, and don’t forget to celebrate those little accomplishments.

  11. Peggy says:

    Thank you Karen for the advice on which room to attact my clutter first, the garage! You have great insight.

    I am determined to get each room, cupboard, and closet orginized. I will set a timer to motivate me to take action.

    I have taken 5 days off work in the past to catch-up and focus on decluttering, but I find I push myself so hard trying to get alot done, so by the time I go back to work I’m exhausted. So now I limit just 2 or 3 days off.

    Need to take more time reading your advice and ideas, also would like to read your new book.

    Thanks again,

  12. Rivera says:

    Hi, Karen. I don’t have a storage space like so, but I have storage in every room. I think I will tackle every one of them individually. Thanks for the advice.

  13. Patty Chamberlain says:

    Hi, Karen. I live in a small trailer with only one bedroom. It was originally a two bedroom but the wall to the small bedroom was taken out to enlarge the living room. This was my parents home and I have inherited it after they passed away. I have started in the bedroom, which is the room on one end. I have cleared away all the clothing that was not in drawers. (my bad) I followed your advice and put those pieces that I haven’t worn or looked at for a year into a bag to give away. I cleaned out a drawer that had my parents things in there (mostly pictures) and put them on top of the dresser for later sorting. That’s as far as I have gotten. Can’t do too much Arthritis and Fibromyalgia limit my physical activities. But, I do feel I have accomplished a lot! I still have another drawer, a cabinet and the closet to clean out. That is what I will be working on this week. Thanks for all your advice.

  14. Karen Biko says:

    Great Job Patty….It just takes those first few steps to get you going! Always work at your own pace so that the changes don’t hit you too hard, but enough that you see some accomplishments. Having a weekly goal is a great thing. Keep my up to date on how you are doing….Have a great 2012!

  15. Lois Howell says:

    Just a comment about storing canning jars. Wash and dry them properly and put a new lid and clean ring on each jar. When you’re ready to use them, everything is there, ready, spider-free!

  16. admin says:

    Fantastic tip Lois, also make sure the clean jars are stored in a container or box with a lid to keep the dust off them!

  17. GG says:

    I really like this website and hope to put the tips to good use.
    I have been trying to declutter my apartment for some time, but have had some bumps, like breaking my hand, causing me to not to be able to do much.

    I have questions about how to deal with items that have sentimental value. I have heard people taking pictures. What do you suggest?
    I have items that have been boxed up in storage and now have to go through these boxes of stuff.
    Should I just get rid of all it since it was already packed away? I know some of the boxes have items from my childhood that I made and I don’t want to feel guilt.
    I just want to not feel the burden of moving stuff on my next move if I do not do anything with it. Why move it if it provides no enjoyment and just sits in a box in a closet somewhere?
    Any tips or suggestions are appreciated.
    Thank you.

  18. admin says:

    Hi GG,

    Questions about sentimental items seem to be coming up more and more often these days. Pictures can be one way to deal with items, but it really comes down to how much sentiment is really involved. If items have been boxed for ages, are they really that important? Will you ever use or display the art project you made in third grade?

    If soem of the items are important, but will never be displayed definitely turn them into photos. I have two young girls who are constantly bringing art projects home, who create their own art with me and after a while what do you do? I don’t want to simply throw them out, so I make sure to photograph everything and I create slideshows that run as my screen savers.This way I still get to enjoy them, but with much less baggage associated with them.

    My husbands even set up our TV to display slideshows, so when we have family friends over I can run these slide shows and we all get to enjoy everything from family memorabilia, to children’s art projects or even old get togethers. This allows us to retain the memories without all the required storage!

    This article may also help with soem ideas for you regarding these treasured digital photos you will soon have, .

    Hope this is helpful to you!


  19. Margaret says:

    Peggy, hang in there. And try selling some of your things on e-bay. I’m also single, but 67, and I’m selling quite a few things that way. It has become a game–“Hmm. What can I sell of this “stuff?” It’s a nice source of extra income AND helps declutter!

    I have been working on this for a while so a little bit at a time works just fine. Also, I am now going over places a second time in some cases, and getting rid of even more “stuff.” When I realize that I just don’t use it–it’s going. It is such a relief to let go of things and be unchaotic.

  20. Karen Biko says:

    Margaret – Thank you so much for your comment and encouragement! Selling things is a great way to offload some of your clutter. I do the same thing on Kijiji. I don’t like throwing things away that I think other people can use. I shake my head when I hear of people taking truck-loads to the dump. Selling off bits and pieces really does give me a sense of doing the ‘right thing’.

    And it is always a bonus when you get that little bit of cash. I just sold three things that have been hanging around my house for too long. And now I’m taking that money so our family can have a fun night out at the movies – clutter free!

  21. Sherri says:

    Using my attic for storage but it has been the dumping ground for so long it’s going to take a while to get through it all. In the “donate” it mode. I was starting to get burned out so I stopped and took a break for the day. I spent a few hours up there plus running to Goodwill. I feel like I definitely got something accomplished. I have all day tomorrow too. Looking forward to purging more but just don’t have the energy left right now. Till tomorrow. Thank you for this site!

  22. Kristie says:

    Hi Karen,

    I was wondering if you have any advice on how someone like myself who is in a wheelchair can tackle decluttering my house? I get so overwhelmed! Oh, and I don’t really have a “storage room” perse. I do have our office, but it is so cluttered up to the door I can’t even get in. So I am not sure where to really start. Also, what advice do you have for enticing a spouse (the main culprit of the clutter!) to help me? I’ve tried just about everything!